Miles McKenna made a name for himself with confessional-style videos on YouTube, building up an audience of millions around the world. The queer youth’s warts-and-all approach to sharing his life resonated with others who found him inspirational, informative, or simply funny.
Then, in 2017, he levelled up: he came out as trans and undertook the process of transitioning online in front of all those eyeballs.
Now, he has written Out! – part self-help manual, part personal scrapbook – which he calls “the ultimate coming-out survival guide”. My endless gratitude to the team at Allen & Unwin who sent me a copy for review.
Out! covers a lot of the same ground as Finding Nevo, albeit with full-colour photos and a lot(!) more(!) exclamation(!) points(!). Unsurprisingly, given his career’s origins, McKenna repeatedly underscores the value of the internet for people who feel alone in their identities. He directs readers to a wealth of online resources, and positions the online space as an opportunity to validate and communicate your identity(s) where your “real” life might not let you.
Although Out! is aimed at a young audience, it would absolutely work as a resource for curious older folks and loved ones. We’ve all heard “it gets better”, but Out! is the book about what we can all do in the meantime.